I’m writing to demand the immediate removal of Dr. Deepak Kaushal as the director of the Southwest National Primate Center for intentionally falsifying data in government-funded experiments on macaque monkeys.
The U.S. Department of Human Services’ Office of Research Integrity found Dr. Deepak Kaushal guilty of “intentionally, knowingly, and/or recklessly falsifying and fabricating the experimental methodology” in 10 separate instances involving infecting non-human primates with tuberculosis and simian immunodeficiency virus.
Appallingly, Texas Biomedical Research Institute, which oversees the Southwest National Primate Center, has implemented only minor corrective measures. Kaushal has the green light to conduct research, receive grant money, and continue with his duties supervising the care of 2,500 primates at the Center. This must not happen.
If grant researchers retain their funding regardless of their conduct, there is no incentive to comply with good research practices. This sends a poor message to investigators about the need to adhere to the highest standards.
This is yet another example that the standard of care for animals used in research is way below that applied to human medicine. A medical director who falsified findings for human research at this magnitude would be removed without question.
Kaushal cruelly experimented on animals while intentionally falsifying data, wasting taxpayer dollars and primates’ lives and lying to the scientific community. It is inexcusable that he continues to conduct research at, let alone direct, a primate research center.
Dr. Kaushal should not be allowed to continue as director and should be removed immediately.
Larry Schlesinger president and CEO of the Texas Biomedical Research Institute
Michael S. Lauer, M.D. Deputy Director for Extramural Research
Timothy M. Persons, Ph.D. Chief Scientist (Science and Technology Department)
Gene Dodoro Comptroller General of the United States